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Oil on Pensacola Beach

In Fort Pickens National Seashore, more than 300 yellow vested workers sifted through sand, finding quarter size tar balls.

On the bay side of the national park, Ted Dwiggins lamented the fact he couldn’t take his dog, Cheeseburger, out for a swim.

“You just watch it creep up slower and slower,” Dwiggins said. “More tar balls.”

Across from a crowded section of Pensacola beach, heavy equipment replaced what should have been tourists in RV’s.

That’s where we met vacationing John Costa from Memphis.

“I’ve been coming here for a number of years, so it’s very sad to see,” Costa said. “We’re only living with it for a week or two a year, you guys have to live with it year-round. It just kills me that this is happening to you guys.”

Swimmers were back in the water on the first day since the health ban was lifted, but they were few and far between.

“I mean it’s pretty much clean,” beach swimmer Ayla Murphy said. “Honestly, I wouldn’t care. I’d be in the water anyway.”

Empty beach chairs were plentiful, and tangible evidence of the economic toll the spill is having on the local economy.

This is day three since the first wave of oil hit Pensacola Beach and crews are still hard at work trying to pick up the mess.

That’s prompting the Governor to call on BP and the federal government to get more crews here before the next wave of oil hits.

Along the beach, more than 1100 people were involved in finishing the cleanup.

The Coast Guard says they aren’t going anywhere.

Favorable conditions will likely keep oil off the beach through the weekend, but how much longer is anybody’s guess.


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